Preparing to Bring Home a New Puppy

You are bringing home a new puppy, yeah, what an exciting time. Just like bringing home a new baby, you must make preparations for when you bring home your new puppy.

When bringing home a puppy you will need to have equipment for the car ride home, for feeding the puppy, and arrangements set up for a health care check-up for your new puppy.

Equipment Needed

Your new puppy will need a room or a crate for those first few days. It should be a small room. If using a crate get one that he will be able to use as an adult too.

You will need food and water dishes, chew toys, a collar, pet ID tag, a leash, and a good quality puppy chow. You will also need plenty of newspapers or training pads.

What you will need for the car ride home:

Try to make this ride a short one, do not make any other stops. Have everything done before you leave to get your puppy. No last minute stops this time!

Try to get the puppy to go to the bathroom before you leave. Many puppies get nervous on their first car ride and you do not want any accidents. Instead of using a crate (this time only), have someone securely hold the puppy.

They are usually small and easy to hold. Use a blanket or towel to swaddle him. Talk to the puppy soothingly during the ride. If the ride is a long one, stop to allow the puppy to stretch his legs and go to the bathroom again.

Do NOT use a rest area, as your puppy will be susceptible to germs and organisms at this young age. Use a side road or other grassy area. Make sure you have something to clean up messes with if necessary.

The First Days Home

There will likely be separation anxiety from leaving his mom and littermates. Be prepared to be with your puppy constantly the first 3 to 4 days that your puppy is home.

The first few days the puppy should always be with someone unless he is eating or sleeping. If you have young children, never leave them alone with the puppy.

Show them how to handle the puppy and teach them how to be gentle with the puppy. You will have to teach children how to safely play with the puppy.

The First Health Check

You should have already lined up the first health check with your vet before you picked up your puppy.

The puppy needs an initial puppy examination even if the individual you got the puppy from told you this was already done, have your own vet check out the puppy.

You will want to be sure that the puppy is free of any congenital traits or medical conditions and in perfect health.

The puppy probably had the first puppy shots at the shelter or breeders (where ever you got him), if not, the puppy will need these now.

Your puppy will have been put on a deworming schedule and heartworm preventative. If not, he will be put on these schedules now.

Feeding Your Puppy

The shelter or breeder you got the puppy from, should have informed you of what the puppy is used to eating.

Try to feed the puppy the same food or at least use that food to mix with the food the vet recommends you feed the puppy and wean the puppy from the old food to the new food.

You should feed the same food the puppy was used to though for at least the first few days home.

At 21 days of age it is usual for puppies to be on commercial puppy chow, so by the time you have your little guy home he is probably used to puppy chow.

If you have a toy breed puppy you may need to moisten the puppy chow for one to two weeks.